At first glance, one may wonder if UTEP will slow down too much to help its superstar senior, Stefon Jackson, now that there are "big-and-tall" guys under the hoop.
Jackson's been leading the "no-height" Miners three years. At 6-5, he's basically been the big guy, even for a man who plays outside, too — and spins and twists and races down the floor dribbling the ball. He's been a key rebounder.
UTEP hasn't been "big-and-good" since Maxey/Van Dyke in the early 1990s. It hasn't been "big-and-real-good"since Foster/Davis before that.
No, no, no. Bomba/Fajardo was not good.
I'm saying this new size could benefit Jackson's game, UTEP and Jackson's career in the pros. Look what having Foster/Davis did for Tim Hardaway.
Yes, the Miners will be slower with a couple of 6-11s and a 7-footer Coach Tony Barbee can choose from like he never has before. Nor did Doc Sadler or Billy Gillispie — or Haskins in his last years.
Now, when opponents come out to get in Jackson's face, he can fire a pass inside. A real big guy, no matter if he's not agile and is slow, is unstoppable against one or zero defenders between him and the hoop.
Also, if the big guys prove good players, and defenses sag on them, there's Stefon on the outside, where he's always been a good jump shooter.
This is a good situation, I think, for Jackson and for UTEP.